Lady Pirate Spotlight: Alisha Bishop
Lady Pirate Spotlight: Alisha Bishop
Alisha Bishop's role on the ECU women's basketball team has changed every year the senior guard has been a part of the program. Despite the fact that Bishop moved from the starting line up as a junior to the sixth man as a senior, her production and importance to the team are at all-time highs.
For "AB", as her friends and teammates call her, basketball has always been a part of her life. Since she could walk, a basketball has been her toy of choice. Instead of playing with dolls and doing hair with the other girls, Bishop was on the court with her aunt learning how to make jump shots and practicing those three pointers.
"My Aunt Monica has always been my inspiration," reflected Bishop. "She would always be on the court with me, making me tougher physically and mentally."
When asked why she chose East Carolina, Bishop smiled and said, "I kind of knew from the jump where I wanted to be."
Having had a former high school teammate play at ECU, Bishop was able to attend many games and become well acquainted with the coaching staff, all of which persuaded her decision to commit to the Lady Pirates.
Knowing that ECU was the place for her, Bishop had to make the transition from Virginia Beach, Va., to Greenville, N.C.
"My first year in college was rough," says Bishop. "Having to make that transition, to be on your own was mentally draining."
If you were to look at her first year stats you wouldn't think that her transition was too tough. Bishop played in all 27 games, starting nine, and averaged 15 minutes a game. She had 17 assists, 12 steals, and shot 60 percent from the free-throw line.
As a junior, her role became more defined as she started in 18 games. Bishop recorded career-highs in points (23), assists (6) and rebounding (6).
Throughout her career, Bishop has filled various roles and as a senior she has become the sixth man, leading the team off the bench.
"I feel comfortable with it," said Bishop about her role. "I just come in and do what I can to help the team."
As Bishop comes off the bench her teammates and coaches have come to depend on that spark she gives the team.
"She is having a great senior year," said head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener. "She's picked up her defense and rebounding, and has been able to come into the game hitting some major threes. AB has been able to give us that spark we really need in some games and helped us gain some momentum."
In her first start as a senior, Bishop recorded her first career double-double with 15 points and a career-high 12 rebounds against N.C. State. With her versatility at the point and as a shooting guard, Bishop has managed to quietly climb up the career three-point list. Currently she has 49 three-pointers and ranks seventh all-time on the Lady Pirates' chart.
When asked about her place in ECU history Bishop said, "I didn't even realize I was seventh in the record books for three-pointers. It makes me feel like all that hard work has paid off. I really try not to think about it personal stats, because it tends to be a distraction. I really need to be focused right now and continue to help the team win".
Since Bishop first stepped on the court as a Lady Pirate, the ECU women's basketball program has had only one winning season. Already at 14-8, the remainder of their season looks promising and so does a return trip to the Conference USA Tournament in Dallas, Texas.
"I am very excited about the season so far. We are working hard on and off the court and it's showing. This is our best season and also my senior year, so I am glad to get the chance to go out with a bang."
After her collegiate basketball career is over, Bishop will put her focus elsewhere and graduate with a degree in sociology. Continuing on, Bishop plans to tackle her next goal in life, law enforcement and ultimately the FBI.